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From the Conventions: Health Care Cures

Pete Springer/OPB

How would the competing health care plans of presidential candidates John McCain and Barak Obama affect you?

Here’s one thing presidential candidates Barack Obama and John McCain seem to agree on: the nation’s health care system is ill and needs a cure. That’s where the agreement ends. The candidates’ medicine for the system would be very different.

With Dave Miller bringing in views from the Democratic National Convention in Denver, we’ll explore the details of the different plans and how they would affect life and health here. Obama would require that children be insured and is proposing access to insurance for everyone through a new federal program. His program also would require many employers cover their workers and would let young people stay covered through their parents’ insurance up to age 25.

McCain proposes a tax credit of $5000 for families and $2500 for individuals to use to buy health insurance. He would cap malpractice awards as a way to cut costs and cut back on state regulation to encourage a national competitive marketplace for insurance.

There are about 45 million Americans without health insurance now. That includes more than half a million (pdf) in Oregon, although the Office for Oregon Health Policy & Research documented slight improvement in 2006. (Watch for 2007 numbers coming out Wednesday.) Are you you uninsured? Or do you have insurance but find you’re pinched by rising costs? Do you run a business that covers your employees? Or can you not afford to?

How would the competing presidential health care proposals change your situation?


  • Kathryn Rayner: Bookkeeper in Redmond
  • Harvey Williams Case manager for a company that provides services for people with disabilities
  • Ron Maurer: Oregon state representative, owner of Rogue River Health Clinic
  • Earl Blumenauer: U.S. Congressman representing Oregon’s third district

Photo credit: Autistic Psycho / Flickr / Creative Commons

medicine convention insurance oregon health plan

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